A Dark Place (2018) Script


You didn't flip the lid down.

No, you don't... You don't have to.

Why are you wearing that hat today?

You know it's going to be 90 degrees.

It's my work hat.

Why do you think you forget so much?

Well, Donny, I don't know.

I guess I'm just a forgetful person.

No, that's not it.

I think you're a careless person.

It's more important to get the job done than g-g-get the job done right.

Is that right? Yeah.

Human nature, though.

Getting the job done the easy way is like running away from the problem.

Because dealing with the problem is...

It takes hard work.

Is that something you just learned about people?

Is human nature the reason you never shut up or mind your own damn business?

I'm dealing with the problem by talking through the problem.

That's all.

What is this, Pick on Donna Day?

All right.

Hey, hey.

You don't smell so good.

Well, I need a wash. Ma, why ain't you in bed?

I haven't been sleeping nights.

Figured I might as well skip the afternoon naps.

Fine, but you'll be in more pain later.

No, I've felt good this week. All right.

I got to take a shower. I'm going to go see Wendy.

You want me to put you in front of the TV?

No, no. Give her a kiss for me, though, yeah?

Hey, Don! Donny!

What do you want, Donny?

What do you think I want?

She's playing in her room. She doesn't want to see you.

What, did you not tell her I was coming?

How was I supposed to know you were coming?

It's Tuesday, Linda, frick's sake.

Is Randy here? No.

How's he doing?

He's fine.

You can come on too, if you want.

I'm good.

All right.

I'm trying.

You're what?

I'm trying.

Yeah, you're always trying, Donny.

She's been asking me shit about us.

She asked me if we used to be married.

Wonder where she got that idea. Is that what you're telling her?

No, that's... That's not what I meant.

No, nothing ain't ever what you meant.

Daddy, you're here! Hey. Hey, sweets.

What are you doing here?

Mom said you weren't coming today.

Oh, did she? I want to show you some stuff.

Come here, come here.

Hey, come look.

I got the complete set now.

Oh, really?

Yeah. You got Big Ben?

Yeah, I got Big Ben. All of them.

All of them? What you mean, all of them?

Well, I mean, I got the regular card, I got the Super Bowl card, his All-Pro card.

You got his All-Pro card? Oh, and check this out.

What, did Mom get you that?

Oh, Randy got it for me.

No, but look. I posted this video yesterday.

It's Big Ben in high school.

Can you believe he was a wideout back then?

You're on social media now?

Dad, I'm 11.

Thirteen on here.

I ain't even on social media.

Well, you ain't even got any friends.

Who said I got no friends?


Well, he probably got no friends.

Who the fuck...

Who the hell are his friends?

A bunch of them come over a few nights a week, and they drink beers and play poker...

Wait, go back, go back.

Who's that?


Justin Ziegler.

He's full of shit. Don't say...

Don't say "shit".

I know Justin.

His family's on my route.

So? So, what's the brother called?


I think.

Tyler, right? Yeah, Tyler.

That's his name. Ask him what's going on.

Oh, no, thank you.

No, he waves at me every morning from his window.

He wasn't there this morning. Just ask him what's going on.

Dad, don't embarrass me.

Nothing ever happens around here.

Well, what if... What if it was you?

Randy get you them flags and that?


But he don't like hockey.

He don't like hockey?

What, is he... some kind of weirdo?

Hey, you want to go skating in Cranberry this weekend?

Get out of the heat? Yeah.

Yeah? All right.



You done?


This is so embarrassing.

Sorry. School's tough as it is, Dad.

Justin's an idiot, and it's like social suicide.

Everyone thinks you got a creepy father.

They think I have two fathers.

Well, you have one father, Wendy, all right?

One. Just me.

Not Randy. I'm your dad.

Did he... Did he say anything about Tyler?

No, Dad, can you just please stay out of that part of my life?

Tyler's going to show up, and then you can just forget about the whole thing, all right?

All right?

All right.

Hey. Hey, change your password.

It was too easy to break into your page.

Good night, Dad.

Hey, Wendy?

...and no one took it for the second time in a month.

There is a big difference...

Big difference of opinion going down here.

The coach is being criticized, and I'm not sure that's where the issue...

Been approved against strong opposition from local residents.

There will be a public meeting held at some point yet to be announced.

In Harburg County tonight, police are still searching for 6-year-old Tyler Ziegler, missing since Monday evening.

Tyler has been described as sandy-haired, and was last seen wearing blue jeans and a red T-shirt.

If you have any information, please don't hesitate to call.

And in other news, the heat wave continues to sweet Pennsylvania...

Hey, Randy, what are you doing?

And some tragic news today regarding the missing 6-year-old Tyler Ziegler.

Early this morning, his body was discovered in the creek not far from...

God, poor kid.

Do you ever just want to jump aboard?

See where it takes you?


Or jump in front.

What the hell are you doing? Donny?

Hey, Mrs. Ziegler.

I'm sorry for your loss.

How are you holding up?

Tyler used to wave at me, you know.

He didn't go exploring.


Cops say he wandered off into the woods somewhere.

He didn't.

Justin would do that.

Not Tyler.

He's scared of everything.

Wouldn't even come within 10 feet of the curb.

Well, you think something happened to him?

It didn't have to happen.

What'd she say?

He didn't go exploring.

He wouldn't.

That's terrible.

Didn't you and your dad used to play in the same crick?

I don't know, Ma. Probably.

I'm going to go out now.

You want me to put you by the TV?

No, no. Where are you going?

Just out.

Egg whites and hash browns, light on the onions?

No, just a hot cocoa.

It's like 100 degrees out.

Can I ask you a question?

Chicken still ain't free-range, and we don't use Krispy Kreme's recipe on the French toast. Not that.

What do you want to know, Donny?

Have you seen the Ziegler family recently?

Not since last week, why?

Because I don't...

Anyone strange come in here the past couple days?

I ain't seen an unfamiliar face in here in about three years.

What's the matter with you?

I got to get going.

Thank you for your cooperation.

You want your hot cocoa to go?

No, it's all right.

But your eyes back in your head, Jim. or I'll tell Nancy what your pecker's been thinking.

Thank you, Tara.

Thank you.

What's going on, Donny?

Oh, hey. What you doing?

I don't know.

Yes, you do.

Look, the Zieglers, they're grieving for Tyler, and... and you're kind of drawing attention to yourself.

You know you're doing that, right?

Well, no, I was talking to Mrs. Ziegler.

You guys think he just walked off?

Donald, stop.

The boy drowned. That's all there is to it.

Leave it to us, okay?


Let us handle it.

He didn't go exploring.

He's scared of everything.

Oh, hey, Max.

How's it going?

Not bad.

What's up? Is something bothering you?


How about you?

Don, man, what are you talking about?

The Ziegler kid.


It's been three days.


Yeah, so why ain't you investigating it?

Because he drowned.

He ain't the first kid to drown in the creek.

All right, just be straight with me for a second, off the record.

Off the record? What are you, a reporter now?

No, I'm still in sanitation.

Yeah, I know you're in sanitation.

Yeah, okay, come on, we know each other 25 years.


Uh... yeah.

Yeah? So? So?

What's going on?

There's nothing going on.

The parents don't want to press no charges...

What's that got to do with nothing?

Because he drowned on the property.

No, his death.

Why aren't you investigating his death?

Why are you asking me about this?

It's bothering me. Why?

Everyone's saying he just wandered off.

He didn't. Mrs. Ziegler told me.

All right, me and Pete...

You know Pete, right?

Pete Stanford? Pete Stanford.

We was prepping an investigation, and we had these pictures of the kid we were going to take to the coroner.

But Mooney comes in and he tells us not to go.

Not to go to the coroner?


Then he took him from us, and then he redirected us to some bullshit meth head in Evans City.

Man, every kid in that town is fried.

So, what's bothering you? Mooney?

No, I didn't say that.

I didn't say nothing was bothering me.

It's just, I hadn't heard nothing in a couple days, and that's it.

So ain't the Zieglers looking for answers?

I'm sure Sheriff Mooney's got it all under control.

Can I get you anything, Donny?

No! Charlie, thank you.

Maybe you ought to leave Officer Himmler alone, yeah?

It's fine, Charlie. Fine, I'll get a beer.

A Diet Coke.

Diet Coke.

Just take it easy.

All right. I'm calm.

Can I ask you... That's enough.

You want to have a beer or you want to sit down?


Thanks, Max.


What the hell are you looking for?


What, like bloodstains and that?

You really think they'd be stupid enough to throw their evidence in the trash?

What did you do after work yesterday?



Yeah, I didn't do nothing.

I heard you was in Murphy's Kitchen.


So you was acting funny.

I'm always acting funny. I can't help that.

Do the presidents thing.

I can't do it if I ain't nervous.

If I ain't nervous I got to think about it.

I never get the VP names if I got to think about it.

Oh, come on. Do it.


Well, I guess you was nervous yesterday.

Just go. Go.

Donny, I just was asking.

Can we go!

What the hell's the matter with you?


Donny, okay.

Calm down.

Can we just go?


Excuse me.

Where the hell you think you're going?

Fucking mick.

You stay away from the Zieglers.

They said you was asking around about the dead kid and that.

Well, I was just... Told me to tell you to quit it.

Jerry Ziegler just told you that's what he's worried about?

You've been told.


Uh, hi.

Is this, uh...

...is it Mickey?



You got the wrong number, pal.

Uh... uh... sorry.

Who did I call?

Good night.

This is Joel.

I'm not available to take your call, so please leave a message and I'll call you back.

These aren't mine.

No shit. They're for Wendy.

There's a '78 Bradshaw in there. He was MVP that year.

Why are you getting stuff for Wendy?

She'll like it.



Yeah, Joel.

Are you sure it wasn't Joe?

No, Joel. Joel.

Dr. Pomorowski, he's a Joel.

Dr. Pomor...

Well, he's Wendy's pediatrician.

Yeah, he's everyone's pediatrician, unless you want to go all the way out to Cranberry.

Dr. Joel Pomorowski.


Why were the Zieglers on the phone with him so much?

Was he a sick kid?

I don't know.

You're letting the AC out.


Do you need something?

Uh, yeah.

Close the door.

When's the Ziegler viewing?

Sir, the child was buried yesterday.

It was a private service.

Are you some kind of cousin or something?

No. No.

Well, did he have any medical conditions?

You're not family, sir?

I think you should leave.


Mom's mad at you.

Why... Why's that?

Because you ain't supposed to take me skating.

Saturdays ain't part of the deal.

Oh, I'll... I'll... I'll... I'll talk to Mom, all right?

Hey, Wendy, do you know if the degenerate kids still hang out at the old mill?

Yeah, by the old smoke shacks.

Dad, why?

Well, I...

I'm just... I'm looking for Justin Ziegler.

Does he hang out there?


It's all right. I'll go to the mill.

Don't... Don't worry.

All right, sweets. I'll talk to you later. Bye.

Was that Donny?


I left a box of macaroni and cheese out for you.

I'm headed out.






Are you Justin?

Are you Justin... Are you Justin Ziegler?

Hey, I'm sorry for your brother.

I need to ask you a couple of questions.

You a cop?

No, I'm a state-assigned grief counselor.

What do you want?

Dr. Pomorowski. Do you know him?

Yeah. Yeah?

Was he ever at your house for Tyler?

For Tyler? Yeah, was he sick a lot?

He drowned. I know he drowned.

I know that. That's not what I'm asking you.

Was he sick before that?


So Pomorowski was never at your house?

He was sometimes.

He was? Why?

For my mom.

For your mom?

I'm going to go now.


Wendy Connolly's cool.

Her friends told me to tell you they broke into her page.

They were just messing about. They didn't mean nothing by it.

Who the fuck is Wendy Connolly?

So the kid didn't have any health problems?

His brother says not.

But that little punk's got the IQ of a spoon, so I don't know.

Kids today, they're getting dumber.

Except Wendy.

So, what was he doing there then?

He was there for Patty. I just told you that.

Patty's, like, 45.


So pediatricians treat kids, not adults.

What, he can't treat Patty too?

Donny, maybe she was sleeping with Pomorowski.


What's that mean?

They were banging.


Hm. You're so cute.

The phone calls.

Like, he's always at their house and shit.

He's a doctor. He can't do that.

You think he's above that because of what he does for a living?

I don't think...


What is it?

What does it say?


You going to tell me what you're thinking?

Pull over here.

I'll walk the rest.

All right.

I'll be here.

I thought that was your work hat.

It is.

Hey, you left a note on my truck?


What do you want?

We know you fucking did it. Now, jump.

Aah! No!




Shit, Donny, are you okay?







I don't want to do this no more.

We got to take this to the cops.

Mc... McKinley/Hobart.


Hey. What the fuck?

Did you send them after me?

Send who?

What's going on, Max? Everyone's saying I did it.

I'm being set up, right?


Shit, Donny. Ain't gonna kill me, you know.

What's going on? I could be dead.

I don't know what you're talking about, man.

Oh, no? Two guys tried to make me jump off the bridge, and one of them had a gun, but he didn't shoot it because he wanted to make it look like an accident.

Something's going on.

Something's going on! Okay, shh!

I know something's going on, okay?

You don't got to tell me that.

Donny, shut up.

You're going to wake up my fucking kids.

Jesus, Donny.

Why didn't you just drop it?

Ain't you got a little girl, Donny? Ain't that enough?


What are you trying to do?

Are you trying to give your shitty life some meaning?

Is that it?

He was an innocent little kid.

And no one gives a shit.

You know...

You remember Bill Frankel?

From high school?

He works over at the coroner's lab.

In Harburg?

No, not here. In Pittsburgh.

What are you... What...

What are you asking me to do?

I'm not asking you to do anything, Donny.

I'm just telling you that you need evidence.

And with a dead kid, there's almost always abuse first.

And I found out that there was no autopsy.

What kind of abuse?

Why was there no autopsy?

Hello. Do you have an appointment?

No. My daughter's a patient. I need to see Dr. Pomorowski.

Oh, is it an urgent matter?

Yeah, I'd say it's urgent.

Sign in and have a seat.

Sorry about the wait. It's been a crazy day.

I used to love the sound this stuff made when I was a kid.

So you were a patient?

No, I stopped coming when my mom couldn't afford the insurance.

I think I'm overdue a tetanus shot.

Well, we can certainly arrange that.


I don't like shots.

Oh. Why don't you have a seat.

So, um... who is your daughter?

Uh, Wendy Devlin Connolly.

Wendy Connolly.

Should be Devlin.

All right, and what seems to be the problem?

I ain't here for her.

So you do want a tetanus shot.

Were you the attending physician for Tyler Ziegler?

Mr. Devlin, I can't give out private information about my patients.

So you are?

Again, how are you related to the Ziegler family?

Were you sleeping with his mother?

I seen the phone records.

Just tell me. I don't care. Just... your wife won't know.

Nobody will ever know.

Why didn't you call for an autopsy?

Because he drowned.

He have any medical conditions?

No. Healthy people can still drown.

Did you tell the police that?

Of course I told the police that.

Was he abused?


That's what I asked you.

Mr. Devlin, his lungs were filled with creek water, all right?

He wandered off and he drowned.

That's what the mother said and that's what the police said.

That's not what his mother said.

Mr. Devlin, if there was more I could have done, I would have done it.

Why wasn't there an autopsy?

Because Patty didn't want one.

Why didn't Patty want an autopsy?


Huh? Why didn't she want an autopsy?


Why didn't she...?

Because she had some suspicions about Jerry, all right?

And frankly, I don't think even she wanted to know.


Yes. The father.

Mr. Devlin, look, I've been married 31 years and I've had this practice for 26.

I inherited it from my father. He inherited it from his.

I'd kind of like to keep it.

My father's dead.

Did you do it, Jerry?

Did you do it?

Are you freaking crazy? You out of your mind?

Do what?



Donny, stop it. I'm calling the cops.

Did you do it, Jerry?

What are you doing?

What are you saying?

You think I hurt my kid?

Donny, I never hurt him.

I never laid a finger on him. Never!

Did you send those men after me?

What? No. Stop!

What, are you going to run me over now?

Maybe Jerry's lying. He ain't lying.

How do you know that?

Donny, you need to stop.

Attacking people? I mean, you're making yourself look...


Oh, God.

Hey, look at me. Look at me.

I care for you, Donny.

Don't do that! What? Why? Why not?

Don't do that! Why?

Because I'm with someone else! Who? Linda?

Jesus, don't you think if that whore had any feelings for you...

Don't you call her that! Don't you dare call her that!

We're going to get married! Oh, you're getting married?

Yeah, we got a kid! So?

So you don't know what it's like to have a kid.

You gave your kid away.

Is that what you think I did, Donny?

Is that what you think?

Is it?

"Donald and Donna" don't sound right!

They're going to fire you if you miss another day.

I ain't helping you with this shit no more.

You know what? You don't know everything you think you know.


I just got off, Donny.

I know, I know, I know. I got to talk to you.

I want to know if you still think there's a chance for you and me... and Wendy.

There was never a chance for you and me, Donny.

Well, there was.

One time, there was.

Come on, we're both Irish.

Both like the Steelers.

Are you serious, Donny?

You're really going to make me say this again?

I barely knew you. And we was drunk.

I wasn't drunk. Bullshit.

I wasn't drunk. I can't drink! My dad died of drink!

I can't drink. Shh!

I told you that.

I don't want to talk to you about this anymore, Donny.

No, I've been faithful to you. I haven't been with nobody...

You sound like a psycho when you say things like that.

We was never together.

I know you tell people that we was, but we wasn't.


It's embarrassing when that gets back to me.

Why is it embarrassing? Oh...

Why is it embarrassing?

Don't make me say it.

You think I don't hate the way I am?

You think I don't know what people think of me?

I don't think you ever know what people think.

Well, I know our daughter loves me.

You know why she's named Wendy?

She's named after my aunt.


It's from Peter Pan.


You and me and Wendy... in Neverland.

Come on.

She deserves... Don't.

Wendy didn't stay in Neverland, Donny.

She went the fuck home.

All right.

You need evidence.

You remember Bill?

Coroner up in Pittsburgh.

Where are you going at this hour?

Ma, why are you still awake?

Can't sleep.

Ma, I got to go, all right?

All right. God will protect you.

He won't give you more than you can handle.

What does that mean?

It's in the Bible.

Go to bed, Ma.

Oh, hey! Bill!

Hey, it's... It's Donald Devlin.

From... I was a year ahead of you in high school.

Hey, Devlin. Yeah. Yeah.

I dated Linda Connolly.

Max Himmler asked me to come down and see you.

He wanted to know if you could help us.

Help you with what?

Well, you look at the bodies, right?

Like a coroner?

Um... forensic evidence specialist.

Right. Like a scientist.

Scientist. Yeah, sure.

That's what I am. Good.

He needs you to take a look at something.

Why didn't Max just come down himself?

Oh, he's meeting with the forensics guys back in Harburg.

He wanted me to come down.

You a cop too?


What do you want, Donald?

I need you...

I need you to just...

I just need you to tell me if a dead kid was abused or not.

I don't know. I'd have to examine the body.

I'll show it to you.

Where are we going?

There's been no autopsy.


Are you crazy?

You can't fucking do this.

Do you know what you've done, Donny?

Are you crazy?

You went and dug the kid up!

That's not what I meant, Donny.

This is a mess, Donny.

I didn't tell you to do that.

You fucked me on this, Donny. Fucked us both!

Hey, Donny.

Oh, hi.

Come on, get in the car, Mr. Devlin.

I just got home.

I got to make dinner for my mom.

Get in the car.

Heard you like to talk.

You got nothing to say now?

Don't you got any questions for me?

Okay, I'll start.

You know how many homicides happen on my watch in Harburg County?



How many accidents happen?


Anything else on your mind?

The boy drowned. It's damn tragic.

But it happens, you understand?

Do you understand?


Can you not see what you're doing?

Can you not see what you're doing?

You ain't a smart man, Donald.

You're making it worse.

I could charge you right now, the way you've been acting.

But I wouldn't hurt no one.

But do you think I could hurt someone?

You let this go, and you let this go right fucking now.


Get out of my car.




Can't sleep.

Take your pills.


No, don't want to get dependent on them.

Ma, you're not going... you're not going to get dependent.

I'm praying for you, son.

Well, don't.

You're a good boy, Donald.

No, I ain't. Yes, you are.

The Bible says people's hearts are good.

Sometimes we do bad things, but no one's truly bad.

"The heart is deceitful above all things, "and desperately sick.

Who can understand it?"

That's what the Bible says, Ma.

I'd better go to bed.

Your dad'll be home soon.

What you doing?

I came looking for you.

What happened to your face?


I called my mom today.

We talked, and... she brought up this thing that happened in the town when we were kids. You know what?

I don't want to hear about it, all right?

The kid drowned. You know he didn't drown.

He did drown.

I don't know if it's the same thing or not, but I looked it up and I found this.

No, I don't want to see it.

I think you should talk to him.

He's working in a garage down in Duquesne.

The name and the address is on there.

Talk to him.

Can I help you?

Is George here?

What do you need him for?

Is he here or not?

Yeah, he's out back.

Follow me.

See that car out in the end?

He's under the hood.


George Atzerodt?

Is that about you?

Did this guy hurt you?


Yeah. Yeah.

It's all right.

Hello, no on here is available to answer your call.

Please leave a message after the tone.

Donny, it's Max.

Flew up to the coroner's office over in Pittsburgh.

They've opened up an official inquest.

This is premature, but Bill confirmed that they did find evidence of abuse.

So I'm going to need you to come down to the station.

Where the hell are you, Donny?

I know you didn't touch your son.

I know you had nothing to do with it.

Where's Mrs. Ziegler?

She's upstairs. She always is.

Mrs. Ziegler?

It's Donald Devlin.

I found an abuse case against Dr. Pomorowski.

It's from years ago.

Settled out of court. Pittsburgh.

I spoke with the victim this afternoon down in Duquesne.

He's not the only one.

Was Pomorowski here that day?

Mrs. Ziegler?

You need to take this to the sheriff now.

It won't make no difference.

Well, he's got to listen.

It's evidence.

I was going to stop it.

Wait, what are you talking about?

I was going to stop it.

I wasn't going to leave them alone no more.

You left Tyler alone with Pomorowski?

I thought he wanted me.

Did you know what he was doing?

Did you know what he was doing to Tyler the whole time?

I left Tyler alone with him a couple of times while I ran errands, that was all.

And I was going to stop that, I was.

I love my son. I...

I could go to prison.

For what?

Child neglect.

Sheriff Moon... Sheriff Mooney told me.

Was Sheriff Mooney doing it too?


You don't know?

They were friends a long time!

My baby.

He-He... you did nothing?

Tyler never said nothing.

He never said nothing!

He was quiet! He was always quiet!

He was quiet because he was a shell of a boy... because... that man took something away from him.

Because you took something away from him.

I loved him.

I didn't know.

You just ignored it because it was easier.

He was just a little boy.

Why do I have to come home and clean up after you?

What have you been doing all day?

Why don't you call that retard, D-D-D-Donny?

This has nothing to do with him!

Why are you bringing him into this?

Because he's a fucking retard!


What happened? Huh?

Oh... nothing.

What you doing?



What you doing?

Just came by to pick something up.

They're at it again.


What you think of Randy?

He's okay, I guess.

I mean, he ain't my dad.


You don't have to be scared of him.

You don't have to be scared of anything.

I know.


I love you, sweets.

I know.